Today is Guido Vincenzo’s (aka Vinny) 11th birthday and, as you can see, he’s as handsome, healthy and toothy as ever. Here’s to 11 more years! 😛 And I believe that’s totally possible with proper diet, care and exercise.
I feed Vinny and Stella a raw diet with plenty of fruits, veggies and seeds; however, this is not a raw vegan diet. I am a raw vegan (well, actually bee-gan. I consume local bee pollen daily, but am otherwise completely vegan – including the avoidance of all leather and other animal-derived ingredients/items). So, how does a vegan feel about feeding her dogs raw meat and bones. Honestly, I’m torn between what is generally thought to be a necessity for canine health and my own convictions.
Dogs are omnivores, not obligate carnivores like cats are believed to be. I don’t buy into the belief that humans need – or should even consider eating – animal products for good health, so why do I think it’s necessary for dogs? For me, it comes down to the differences in our teeth and digestive systems. Dogs have very acidic digestive environments for breaking down meat and sharp teeth for ripping flesh and chewing bones. Humans have teeth intended primarily for grinding vegetation and have more alkaline digestive environments (at least they should be much more alkaline!).
I have a few articles and raw recipe books that promote and provide general guidelines for a raw diet for dogs. The best resources, in my opinion, are: Ani’s Raw Food Kitchen, LifeFood Recipe Book, and an article in December 2007 VegNews. Based on these recipes and guidelines, I have been preparing the following for Vinny & Stella – with some seasonal variation – and they LOVE it.
- Raw meat and bones – one of the following brands/varieties:
- A mix of the following raw ingredients broken down in food processor and/or pulp from juicer. Nothing goes to waste here:
- sunflower seeds and/or almond
- carrots – whole and/or juice pulp
- red bell pepper
- fruit – usually apple, pear, melon w/rind, or juice pulp
- greens – usually spinach, kale, baby lettuce mix, or juice pulp w/celery & cucumber too
- parsley – my dogs never have bad breath. seriously!
- garlic – natural flea control (not a big prob in Portland)
- flax meal or oil
- Green Mush
Peace. Or as Vinny says, Pace.